Summit Air Ambulance Celebrating Two Years In Bozeman - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Summit Air Ambulance Celebrating Two Years In Bozeman

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BELGRADE -

Summit Air Ambulance is celebrating two years in Bozeman, and in Montana.

They serve mostly the southwest Montana, taking patients to hospitals in Bozeman, Helena and Great Falls.

And they've become an important part of southwest Montana.

On December 5 Summit Air Ambulance got a call from Ennis Medical Center.  A patient was having a heart attack and needed to be transported to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital immediately.

But, Bozeman is about an hour's drive.

The Summit Air Ambulance chopper responded and transported the patient to Bozeman Deaconess in half that time.

Summit Air Ambulance Flight Paramedic Kris Kaull said it took a team effort to save this patient.

"What was great about this call was every single area and every single point along the line worked perfectly and the patient was in full health," said Kaull.

That wouldn't have been possible until January 2012 when Summit Air came to Bozeman.

In those two years, Kaull said they've responded to more than 200 patient calls each year, all to provide better care to rural Montanans.

"Rural areas like Yellowstone National Park, community access hospitals now have a service they've never seen before and lives are being impacted."

With much of rural southwest Montana being remote and rugged terrain in the backcountry, Flight Nurse Emily Rex said they are still there to help.

"We do have infrared capabilities and night vision goggles that have helped us do some search and rescues in the area to help find people that have been lost or injured."

She said it is a job she wouldn't trade for the world.

"What I love about my job is every day when I come into work, I never know what's going to happen or what I'm going to get, I work with great people and I get to touch people's lives not everyone gets too."

A second air ambulance service is also coming to southwest Montana.

Life Flight Network is expected to start serving Butte and the surrounding areas Wednesday.

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